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Loncon 3: Charlie's worldcon schedule

If you're attending Loncon 3 and want to see me, bookmark this blog entry. I'll update it as things change.

I'll be at Loncon 3 from Thursday August 14th through Monday 18th. Afterwards, I'll be travelling to Dublin for Shamrokon, the Eurocon. (No, I will not be attending Nine Worlds: doing three large conventions on consecutive weekends would be insane.) See below the fold for my schedule for the London trip, including non-convention events. I'll post my Shamrokon schedule in a different blog entry, once it firms up.

Note: the first event is provisional.

Wednesday 13th

6pm, Forbidden Planet, 179 Shaftesbury Ave, London

Titan Books mass signing

(This event is provisional: I'd like to be there, but I'm driving down from Leeds to London that day and my ability to make the signing depends on traffic, hotel check-in, the car not catching fire and exploding en route, and so on. So I'm promising nothing. Your consolation prize if I crash and burn along the way: Cory Doctorow!)

Thursday 14th

LOLcats in Space: Social Media, Humour, and SF Narratives

12:00—13:30, Capital Suite 16 (ExCeL)

This panel will focus on the challenges science fiction authors face in dealing with the plot and setting implications of social media. How do these tools affect the way stories unfold? Can writers represent the playful and ever-changing conventions of social media discussions without writing a novel that looks hopelessly dated before it even hits the shelves, and if so how? Put another way: would Kim Stanley's Robinson's 2312 have been greatly improved by a GIF of a spinning asteroid with a cat in it saying: Asteroid kitteh sez yur lint trap'z fulla cat haerz? So panel. Very discussion. Wow.

The Fermi Paradox in Light of the Kepler Mission

19:00—20:00, Capital Suite 15 (ExCeL)

The Kepler Mission has been hugely successful in searching for exoplanets. It's results have been used as the basis of claims that Earthlike planets lie in the habitable zones of 20% of stars in the galaxy. This would mean that the nearest habitable planet s just 12 light years away. If habitable planets are so common why have we seen no sign of intelligent life spreading from star to star? Does this mean that we really are alone in the universe? The panel considers Kepler and other results and try to come up with more informed answers to Fermi's infamous question: "Where are they?"

Friday 15th

Scientists vs Authors Quiz

22:00—23:30, Capital Suite 14 (ExCeL)

After their narrow defeat at Eastercon, will the Authors get their revenge or will the supremacy of the Scientists go unchallenged? See what SF writers know abotu science and what scientists known about SF at the rematch!

Saturday 16th


12:00—13:00, Autographing 9

Literary Beer

20:00—21:00, The Bar (ExCeL) (You will need to sign up in advance: space is limited!)

Sunday 17th

Reading: Charles Stross

15:00—15:30, London Suite 1 (ExCeL)

(And later that evening you will probably definitely be able to find me in the Hugo Losers' Party!)

Monday 18th

Rat's Monkey's Ass

10:00—11:00, Capital Suite 3 (ExCeL)

Swearing in science fiction and fantasy is occasionally a minefield of anachronism, but then, there's often nothing weirder than hearing someone yell "frak". Or even worse, a teenage character that refuses to curse at all. This panel will explore swear words in the genres. What purpose does swearing have within a society? What purpose does it serve in fiction, and how important, or not, are profanities to the narrative? When are invented curses more (or less) effective than real (contemporary or historical) examples, and why?

The Ruling Party

15:00—16:30, Capital Suite 13 (ExCeL)

Is there an Alternative? Increasingly it seems that, no matter which party is elected, they do the same things. Charlie Stross has suggested that no matter who is elected, the Ruling Party, an agglomeration of top level politicians across all parties, always has the controls. Is there any alternative to this? Is this a bad thing? And if it is, what can we do about it?

Other stuff is going to show up here in due course: watch the skies!



doing three large conventions on consecutive weekends would be insane

I agree. Which is why we're only doing two out of the Discworld Convention, LonCon3 and Shamrokon.

Oh wait, it seems we're only doing badges for two of those, and herself is on staff for the third.


(More seriously, we're not on programme three weekends in a row - unlike what you'd probably end up being. Guesting that many times that quick would indeed be foolish for the Charlie.)


Swearing in science fiction and fantasy is occasionally a minefield of anachronism,,/em>...

This should be interesting. One comment a beta-reader friend made about my first novel attempt was that there wasn't enough swearing. Not sure why he thought that, I thought there was a fair amount. It's not the sort of language I use much in public, in private is another matter. And I absolutely hate the made up kind, it just seems to be an attempt to make a show kid friendly. Though the Galactica reboot (another term I hate) made it work better than the original series. I think the rule about calling Rabbits Smeerps applies.


Do you know who the other panelists will be on each of the panels?


In answer to jonathan.lennox42, I will be a panellist on The Ruling Party.

I might do a little research on common economic motivations of successive cabinet ministers: I do not claim to be an expert, and I may yield my place to a better-qualified economist or political historian.

Also: dammit, I never got 'round to drawing up those Libertarian Bingo Cards for LonCon panels with an economics interest. It would save hours of wasted time replying to the same predictable assertions masquerading as 'questions'.

There's no shortage of material for stereotypically swivel-eyed f*wittery, from Conservapedia to the Objectivista blogosphere - and our gracious host gets the saner end of it in comments - but there is a certain amount of effort involved in identifying the common tropes and geting short, pithy refutations with citations. Plus, of course, the challenge of providing rational refutation to the special cases we call 'Not even wrong'.


Hmm, it seems like it's not possible to get a day ticket beyond the 14th anymore. I'm not sure if it's because tickets are sold out or because it's 1am and my brain has clocked off but I can't even find an option on the day admissions drop down (on the admissions page: )

Otherwise would love to come and see the Monday talks.


The panel on swearing in SF and fantasy had better mention Scott Lynch's Gentleman Bastards novels. The swearing in those books is epic and magnificent. Yes, even from the nobility.


I have a lot of trouble with "Frak!" without the theme tune to the BBC Micro game going through my head ( jump to 25seconds)

Making up swear words for TV kinda makes sense; it's gets it past the sensor (just rewatching "Farscape", which uses "frell" and "dren").

Books are a different matter, though. There I guess you have some publisher-mediated controls ("you want to sell to the pre-teen market, don't say that; this is acceptable for the YA market; don't piss off your adult readers with too much profanity").

Ah frell; it's only Monday. More dren at work to slog through tomorrow...


I assure you that all days are still available for day memberships. Once you pick the membership type on the dropdown (Adult, Young Adult or whatever) then you should get five checkboxes, one for each day. Unless you pick an Exhibit-Hall-only pass -- those are only available for Friday, Saturday and Sunday.


See you there ... P.S. There may still be Morris-Dancing @ the con on the Sunday, assuming we ( Chingford Morris, that is) can still mount a full side - probably NW clog, rather than Cotswold style. Also, & incidentally, the last I heard, the beer was only going to be Fullers' but there was going to be (that) proper beer. And I've sent details for 3 potential pub-crawls (apart from the Wed meet-up @ GBBF) to the approprioate section of the organisers. What happens next, I know not.


See you at "The Ruling Party," at least.


"In answer to jonathan.lennox42, I will be a panellist on The Ruling Party."

And if I'm not needed elsewhere and nobody else grabs it first, I may be sitting behind the sound board ;)

I'm currently pondering just how much of my LD campaigning kit I can wear before it becomes tasteless.


Beer and Morris Dancing have both moved on since Greg's comment.

Chingford Morris will be dancing on the Sunday at L3, randomly somewhere in the Fan Village. Not in the guide yet, but probably in the early afternoon.

The beer will be Marston's (and beers from breweries owned by Marston's); we're expecting nice selection of English ales at various strengths.

Literary beer signup will be at the info desk, the day before the literary beer. So from 2pm Friday for Charlie's beer.


Do you know who the other panelists will be on each of the panels?

Yep. At least, provisionally. I don't speak for them and it's possible some of their schedules may change.


Will there be any way for those of us who might just be attending on Saturday to attend the literary beer meetup, or is it just for people who manage to make it on Friday and pack the sign-up sheet, heh?


The worldcon is starting to scare me.

It's been too long since I went to a convention.


I shall decide nearer the time. but I may buy a ticket for the Globe Theatre one afternoon, part of a day being a tourist.



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This page contains a single entry by Charlie Stross published on July 28, 2014 9:14 PM.

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